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Turner Co. gives Acad pic scripts

The Academy of Motion Picture Arts & Sciences announced a gift from the Turner Entertainment Co. of a massive collection of movie scripts spanning some 70 years in the history of MGM.

The scribbler collection, which comprises 1,839 feature scripts dating back to 1918, includes such notable MGM titles as “Dinner at Eight,””Singin’ in the Rain,””The Thin Man,””Mutiny on the Bounty,””Ninotchka,””National Velvet” and “North by Northwest.”

Linda Mehr, director of AMPAS’ Margaret Herrick Library, said the 50,000 -piece collection, packed in 1,500 boxes, was the largest single donation ever made to the library.

“We’ve gotten large holdings, but this is extraordinary,” she said. “The list of memorable films is almost endless and the richness of the collection is genuinely awe-inspiring.”

Roger Mayer, prexy of Turner Entertainment, said he gave the scripts to AMPAS on the proviso that Turner retain full access to the material for their own creative purposes. Turner also will contribute funding for maintenance of the scripts.

Mayer said he chose the Academy because of its quality storage facility. He said the AMPAS library did such a good job with a collection of stills MGM donated while he was there in 1969 that he felt they could handle the volume of scripts.

Mehr said cataloging of the collection will begin immediately and script files will be made available for scholarly research by appointment.

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